10. Innovation and Product Management

The company discloses how innovations in products and services are enhanced through suitable processes which improve sustainability with respect to the company’s utilisation of resources and with regard to users. Likewise, a further statement is made with regard to if and how the current and future impact of the key products and services in the value chain and in the product life cycle are assessed.

The impacts of our main products on the social and ecological aspects of sustainability were described earlier in Criteria 2 and 4.  

The effects of extreme climatic conditions and extraordinarily long dry periods combined with high temperatures in recent years have resulted in large fluctuations in yield and quality in hop growing. Our own breeding program develops new, more resistant and productive hop varieties that require much less use of pesticides because of their tolerance and ability to adjust to climatic change. They also cope much better with drought stress. From their cultivation to their use at the brewery, the new varieties consistently deliver more stable yields and bring more certainty to the calculations of brewers and traders. Akoya, an example of one of our innovative breeds, has a high yield stability for the same alpha content and good disease resistance. It is very similar in aroma profile to the older popular German variety Perle, but is more robust in terms of disease and drought resistance, while giving reliably high yields.  

We are also developing new and further developing our existing hop products. The result is innovative products with new aroma profiles for the brewing and beverages sector as well as high-quality products for other industries and a wide range of different applications, such as extracts and oils for cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, food, and animal feed stock.